Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Skokie’

Will a Heat Pump Keep Me Warm Enough in a Skokie Winter?

Saturday, January 11th, 2014

Skokie winters are nothing to sneeze at (if you’ll pardon the pun). Things get mighty cold around here in January, which can create concerns for homeowners who rely on heat pumps instead of gas furnaces or boilers to warm their homes. In Skokie IL, a heat pump installation can be fairly costly, which is offset by its increased efficiency from month to month. Cold air can impact that efficiency, and influence he heat pump’s ability to do its job. “Will a heat pump keep me warm enough in a Skokie winter?” you ask. The answer is usually “no,” though there are ways to correct the issue.

Just so you’re aware: Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning services heat pumps in Skokie, IL.

Heat pumps rely on the same technology used to run air conditioners: cycling refrigerant gas through a series of valves and coils that first warm the surrounding air and then cool it. With a heat pump system, one set of valves and coils is located inside the house and another set is located outside the house. In the summer, the indoor set produced cool air, with hot air produced outside (where it can safely be vented into the great outdoors). In the winter, that process is reversed, with the indoor set producing warm air and the outdoor set producing cool air.

So what’s the issue? The issue is that that warm air often isn’t enough when temperatures dip to the freezing level, which they often do here in Skokie. The heat pumps efficiency – one of the big reasons to get one – drops way down and it often struggles to heat the home properly in the wintertime.

The good news is that hybrid heating units exist, which add a small auxiliary heater onto the heat pump to help it out during those cold days. That preserves the unit’s efficiency – saving you money in monthly bills – without forcing you to skimp on much-needed warmth. If you’re asking “will a heat pump keep me warm enough in a Skokie winter?” then Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning has an answer for you. We handle heat pump installations in Skokie on a regular basis and can provide hybrid heating systems as an alternative to help keep your home warm and toasty like it should be. Call us today to set up an appointment!

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Common Causes of Boiler Leaks

Friday, December 20th, 2013

Here in Skokie, IL, boiler repair services need to be on call during these cold winter months. Problems with your boiler only become more troublesome and urgent in the winter, when the snows fall and you need your heating system to be at its best. Boiler leaks are among the most common repair calls this time of year, exacerbated by months of idle use for your boiler followed by regular daily activity as the temperatures drop and you need your home to be warm and comfortable. Boiler leaks are a tremendous pain, and if you detect them you need to shut down your system and call a repair service immediately. But it’s helpful to know what some of the common causes of boiler leaks are, which can help you identify the source of the problem quickly.

In many cases, older boilers suffer the most potential for leaks, thanks to the inevitable wear and tear of age. Unless it’s regularly maintained, your boiler will inevitably develop rusty areas and overall corrosion. Eventually, the rust will create breaches in the system and leaks will inevitably result. Pay particular attention to corrosion around fittings and seals. They’re the areas most likely to develop a breach.

Beyond that, the key culprit in boiler leaks is excessive pressure, which can exacerbate rusty spots in older boilers and place undue strain on the system with new ones. High pressure can do more than create leaks; in the worst cases it can cause an explosion. In particular, look for clogs or other stoppages in your outlet pipe, which releases pressure from the system. If it gets backed up, then you’re likely to face leaks and other serious concerns throughout your system.

The bad news is that leaks are serious problems. The good news is that they can be handled by professionals. Boiler repair and other heating services are covered in Skokie by Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning. We can hunt down common causes of boiler leaks – and even not-so-common ones – then conduct repairs with thoroughness and efficiency. If boiler leaks are becoming a problem, then call us today to schedule a repair session. You’ll be glad that you did!

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Common Ductwork Problems from Bad Installation

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Your ducts serve to pipe air from your HVAC system throughout your house, and as such serve a vital function in keeping your home comfortable. Here in Skokie IL, ductwork is a part of many modern homes, and is often installed when the homes themselves are built. A bad contractor can create many future headaches if he doesn’t do a good job, however. Without proper installation, ductwork can be a drag on your HVAC system and end up costing you a great deal. Here are some common ductwork problems from bad insulation.

  • Leaks. Leaks form when the seals between sections of ducts are not installed properly, or when pressure on the side of the ducts results in a breach. They can pull air out of the ducts as it travels through your home, and/or pull in air from the outside, which reduces the effectiveness of your HVAC system. The leak will need to be sealed before the system can work again.
  • Crimps. Crimps come about when the installer tries to eel the duct through an awkward spot. A rushed job means that the ducts will suffer from reduced air flow, hampering the speed with which the HVAC system will do its job. This means that it will be forced to expend more energy, raising your monthly bills until the crimp is fixed and the duct placed in a more elegant position.
  • Lack of insulation. If a duct passes through a spot close to an uninsulated outside wall, or isn’t properly covered itself, it may warm or cool the surface at the exact wrong time of year. That will temper the heat or the coolness of the air inside the ducts, slowing the HVAC system’s ability to condition your air.

In Skokie, IL, ductwork repair can be conducted by the experts at Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning.

We deal with common ductwork problems from bad installation, and can not only address the issue, but lower the chances of it cropping up again. We also offer other indoor air quality services in Skokie, so pick up the phone and give us a call today; you’ll be glad that you did!

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How Does a Gas Furnace Heat My Home?

Thursday, October 24th, 2013

Gas furnaces have proven to be reliable source of heat for many households, and in towns like Skokie IL, gas furnace repair services deal with the same basic technology used for decades. The components improve, the systems become more efficient, but gas furnaces are so prevalent because the fundamentals they use to heat your home remain unchanged. “How does a gas furnace heat my home?” you may be asking. The answers reveal much not just about how home heating works, but what happens when your gas furnace breaks down.

Most gas furnaces used “forced air” systems, which bear a certain resemblance to air conditioning systems (and which explain why your furnace may use the same system of ducts that your air conditioning system does). It starts with the thermostat, which detects when the temperature in your home drops below your prescribed level. That triggers the flow of gas into a combustion chamber, which is then lit by an igniter or a pilot light. The burning gas heats up the air very quickly. A fan or blower then moves the air into your duct system and throughout your home, warming the temperature until it’s comfortable.

It’s an effective system, though it requires a number of components to work in sync. When one of them fails, the entire system is compromised. Many times, the furnace will shut off when a problem arises, since the gas it uses to generate heat can become dangerous if it leaks out of the system. In other cases, such as an overload of the fan motor, the system will shut down to prevent further damage to other components.

If you know the answer to “how gas furnaces heat my home?” you’re better equipped to spot such problems and to summon a qualified repair service promptly. The experts at Shavitz Heating and Air Conditioning handle Skokie, IL gas furnace repair and can correct any problems your furnace may be experiencing. Give us a call today to set up an appointment. We’ll discuss your options with you and implement a repair plan with your complete satisfaction in mind.

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What Types of Ductwork Are There?

Thursday, August 22nd, 2013

Are you in the market for a new HVAC system? Are your ducts no longer effective? Whether you’re looking to replace your existing ductwork or you need a comprehensive ductwork system for your new home’s central air or gas furnace, you need to ensure that your ductwork perfectly compliments the other components of your AC and heater. As with many things these days, there is no shortage of ductwork operation available to residential consumers these days. But making the decision does not have to be a daunting prospect–you don’t have to make it alone.

Let Shavitz take care of your ductwork needs in Skokie, IL, whether its duct installation or replacement. Call us today to schedule a consultation.

There are two major types of ductwork that are common in residential homes: flexible and sheet metal.

  • Flexible ductwork. Flexible ducts are often utilized in spaces where hard and rigid ductwork would be difficult or even impossible. They are typically comprised of durable plastic material and often surrounded by an insulation. Such ducts are versatile but they need to be installed correctly because they can be difficult to seal if improperly installed.
  • Sheet metal ductwork. This type of ductwork comes in either rectangular or cylindrical lengths, and can be highly effective and efficient. Anything made out of metal is also highly durable and reliable. Galvanized steel ducts are often wrapped with insulation on the outside.

You also need to make sure that your ducts are properly insulated, especially if they run outside the space of conditioned air. Over time, your ductwork is subject to various temperature and pressure fluctuations, and they may need to be routinely serviced in order to function properly. Cracks, leaks, loose connections, and debris accumulation can also severely impact your HVAC system’s ability to perform as it should. If you notice any issues with your ductwork, you should not hesitate to get in touch with a professional technician sooner than later.

At Shavitz, we can take care of your Skokie, IL ductwork service needs quickly and effectively. We provide comprehensive installation and replacement so make sure to get in touch with us wen you’re ready to get started on your new ductwork.

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Why Should You Call Early For Air Conditioning Repair?

Monday, August 19th, 2013

It happens to everyone at some point. You notice that your air conditioning system is costing more and more to operate, or it is suddenly no longer producing cold air. Maybe it just makes a very strange, unfamiliar noise during its operation. Whatever irregularity or problem you identify with your air conditioning system, it is important that you schedule professional air conditioning repair promptly. No air conditioner can ever be completely problem free, but you can limit the impact of many air conditioning problems by having them evaluated and resolved as soon as possible. Here is some information to consider from the Skokie, IL air conditioning professionals at Shavitz.

First of all, you should always schedule professional air conditioning repair immediately due to the fact that you often have no way of knowing how long that problem has been in development. Air conditioning issues rarely pop up overnight. It is far more likely that the problem has been developing for some time, and that by the time you notice an indication, there may be a problem and some damage may have already been sustained. Putting off necessary repairs only increases the likelihood of serious damages to your system.

Check out the maintenance program offered by Shavitz.

You also should keep in mind the fact that your air conditioning may be damaged even while it is still operational. If you notice a problem with your air conditioning system, but you put off scheduling repair services, you not only increase the risk of serious damage; you risk paying too much money for a lousy performance from your air conditioner. Just because your AC cools your home does not mean that it is doing so in the most efficient manner possible. Save yourself some money by paying for the repairs that your air conditioner needs, rather than paying more money for a subpar cooling performance.

To learn more about when to schedule professional air conditioning repair in Skokie, IL, call Shavitz today. One of our air conditioning specialists will gladly help you determine if your AC is in need of repair. When you know what warning signs to keep an eye out for, you can enjoy the best performance that your air conditioning system has to offer.

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